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61

Despite common misconception, both Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula were ceded to the United Kingdom in perpetuity, via the Treaty of Nanking and the Convention of Peking, respectively. London was under no legal obligation to return them to China. However, most of the Crown Colony of Hong Kong actually consists of the New Territories. That was ...


36

Italy's main issue was its enmity with Austria-Hungary, Germany's main ally. That made Italy the "odd man out" in the so-called Triple Alliance with the other two. Italy had joined (reluctantly) with Germany out of a fear of France. This occurred when France and Britain concluded an alliance that made Britain responsible for the mutual defense of the ...


31

British policy on the continent has traditionally been to maintain the balance of power (this is also really a general European thing). This amounted to shifting alliances all over the continent. Though France and Britain are "traditional" enemies (as neighbours were wont to be in Europe), they certainly hadn't been at war for anywhere near "close to 1000 ...


29

The answer to 1, 2 is very simple. Soviet Union represented itself as a "communist paradise." The country where life was better than in capitalist countries. This was the main justification of communist power and social order. People traveling abroad could immediately see that this was not the case. When this became evident to sufficient number of people, ...


22

The attitude in the early 19 century was somewhat different. No one considered these wars as wars "against France", I mean against the French people. These were the wars against Napoleon, and earlier the wars against the revolutionary government. So there was no notion that "France should be punished". Many French emigres were on the coalition side. It is ...


21

I agree with much of Semaphore's answer, which shows that actually Britain and France were not in a state of perpetual war. But I think your question really relates to "What changed?" so I'll try to answer that. Firstly, the end of the Napoleonic era. The Battle of Waterloo and following months were the end of the Napoleonic wars, and the end of the "Big" ...


19

Yes they did. The Treaty of Good Neighbourship and Friendly Cooperation qualifies as a "peace treaty"; see preamble and article 1 of the Polish text of the treaty. The treaty was signed in 1991 and went into force on 16 January 1992. It did not say specifically "we have had a war until today, but since tomorrow we are at peace", but it would hardly make ...


16

First of all, France's goal is not to "undermine its relationship with Turkey" as you have implied. Instead, this is a product of France's policy of recognising what happened during WWI as a genocide. I believe the most important part of your question is why has France been the most assertive when it comes to recognition of the Armenian genocide. This comes ...


16

Gibraltar was defensible, but Hong Kong was not. In the 1990s, the distance from the UK would have made Hong Hong impossible to defend. Also, Hong Kong is primarily occupied by Chinese, unlike Gibraltar, which is occupied by UK citizens, many of whom are soldiers. Gibraltar is a fortress, and it is relatively close to the UK and hence easily suppliable. ...


12

It is easy to explain why Italy didn't join the war: they had little to gain from it, maybe they also didn't feel prepared. Alliances are always theory and a country can refuse to be dragged into a conflict with powers that are much stronger than it. The question why Italy later still decided to join is more difficult. This website gives the following ...


11

Borders Post-war Polish borders were agreed upon in Teheran (1943) and finalized in Yalta (1945) by the "Big 3". The land was taken from Germany on the grounds of Germany having started the war, to weaken it so that it would never be able to do that again. Population The Poles did not do the ethnic cleansing of those lands singlehandedly - at first the ...


11

Short answer: points 4-6 were unreasonable to the point of being unacceptable, because they gave Vienna so much power over Serbia that it amounted to a forfeiture of Serbian independence. This isn't unique to the time period or Serbia. Countries generally are not happy to subjugate themselves to a hated enemy. Whether they could afford to resist is another ...


11

Legalities Modern India evolved out of the transitionary Dominion of India, which was created from territories of the British Raj. It is important to note that neither Bhutan nor Nepal were princely states under British India. In Nepal's case, the Himalayan kingdom successfully negotiated a Treaty of Friendship in 1923, in which Britain recognised Nepalese ...


11

As the commenters have stated, there are several reasons "Persia" isn't one empire, but a succession of empires controlling the same area, more or less in the period. Rome under the Republic and Empire was a single continuous government. The various Persian governments tended to get knocked around in head to head competition with Mediterranean powers. ...


10

Mers-el-Kebir was indeed a tragic episode in the history of Anglo-French relations. And it wasn't the only incident of its kind (though it was by far the costliest in lives). A number of engagements made up "Operation Catapult". British sailors used force to seize various French ships, some of them, like the giant submarine Surcouf already in British ports. ...


10

No, there was no state of war between Germany and Poland. State of war can end either with a peace treaty or with a surrender. In this case there was a surrender of Germany. Furthermore. German state ceased to exist in mid-1945. If was completely demolished and as such, its foreign relations as well. After a while two new states were instituted by the ...


10

You're right to say that Germany's loss of territory to Poland in 1945 was "harsh" judged by the principle that borders should be delineated according to ethnic and/or historical claims. No one then or since has tried to argue that the areas in question had been anything other than ethnically German for centuries However Germany in 1945 was not any normal ...


10

As answered in comments, the authorities were afraid of their populations defecting en masse (as indeed happened when the borders were thrown open in the GDR and Hungary in the early 1990s, so their fears weren't unfounded) Yes, to a degree. Travel wasn't as easy by far as it was in the west, but it was possible. Yes, some. But those were mostly related to ...


9

The reason is an unresolved territorial dispute over four islets, annexed by the Red Army during the Manchurian Strategic Offensive Operation. In Russia the dispute is known as the Kuril Islands dispute, and in Japan as the Northern Territories dispute. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe have recently restarted ...


9

Until very recently Canada was a much smaller (population-wise) concern than the UK or France. Today those two countries are in the top 25 in population (65 mil and 62 mil), whereas Canada only has 34 million, about the same as Iraq. This is actually a pretty good relative improvement for Canada though. They didn't even break 15 million until around 1960. At ...


9

When do you mean? Up until 1867 it was British - and you could make a reasonable argument that geopoliticaly it was pretty much British until after WWII. Really, the Suez crisis marks the beginning of a separate Canadian foreign policy. In the cold war it was/is a strong US/Nato ally. It's not really big enough in population terms or political will to be ...


9

Yes. The Latin League was founded in 7th century B.C. by a set of Italian states. The capital city was Alba Longa. Delian League was founded in 5th century BC Peloponnesian League was formed between 6 and 4th centuries BC League of Corinth was formed during the winter of 338 BC/337 BC Achaean League existed between 280 BC and 146 BC In central, barbarian, ...


9

Post-World War II Poland was "designed" by the British foreign office, presented by Churchill, and ratified by Roosevelt and Stalin at the Tehran Conference in 1943, as noted in another answer. After World War I, Britain had planned on the so-called Curzon line for the eastern boundary of Poland (based on the ethnic divisions) but the country crossed that ...


9

This is still a mystery. It was probably a combination of several factors, though. The government's focus shifted. Coincidentally or not, after 1433 the Oirat Mongols emerged as a serious threat. Their chieftain, Toγan, united Mongolia under the figurehead Taisun Khan in 1434. Oirat power grew further under his son, Esen. He incorporated neighbouring ...


8

As with the case of France, Turkey's objective is not to have worse relations with Israel. Instead the worsening of relations between Turkey and Israel is a product of internal issues on both sides. Turkey and Israel do have a long history of military cooperation and coordination. Furthermore, Turkey has bought military equipment from Israel (tanks and ...


8

Funny story, that. It all starts with the Suez Canal. Shipping things between the far east and Europe the long way around Africa was certainly doable, but very very time-consuming and expensive. Once built, the canal was half owned by the French and half owned by Egypt. However, Egypt's finances were your typical third world despotic mess, so in 1875 the ...


8

Has happened many times. Russia sold Alaska to the United States and France sold them much of the Mississippi valley. One dictator of Bolivia sold a big chunk of what used to be Bolivia to Brazil for a horse.


8

France was given a lenient peace because of its importance in the European balance of power, and the fear that punishing France too much would end up giving too much power to some other European country. This was the feeling after the removal of Napoleon, who was seen as the problem, not "France." For instance, England felt that France could be a useful ...


8

I conjecture that there is one more reason. The historians you mention belong to the "Western European/North American" culture. It is a direct descendant of the Roman empire (in the cultural sense). Perhaps if you read Persian historians you obtain a different picture. And I am sure that if you read Chinese historians, you will learn a very different ...


7

Short Answer The Kidnapper is the United States/Roosevelt. The Hooligan is Britain/Churchill. The Bully was the Soviet Union/Stalin. For reference, this is the original passage from Chiang's diary: 聯合國中之四國,我為最弱,甚以弱者遇拐子、流氓與土霸為可危,也識知:人非自強,任何人亦不能為助。而國家之不求自強,則無論為敵為友,皆一汝為俎上之肉,可不戒懼? Of the four members of the United Nations, we are the weakest; it is ...



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